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An introductory circle of trust retreat for nonprofit leaders based on the work of Parker J. Palmer and the Center for Courage & Renewal.

Courage to Lead provides an opportunity for nonprofit executives and other social sector leaders to renew themselves, look at their own approach to leadership, and build a deep, trusted community of peers.  The program:

  • Renews heart, mind and spirit through exploration of the inner life of leaders
  • Provides a rare opportunity to slow down and reflect
  • Explores practices that sustain vocational vitality and support leadership effectiveness
  • Builds a safe and trustworthy community of peers

Introductory Retreats provide an opportunity to experience all that a Courage to Lead retreat has to offer.  Many people attend an introductory retreat in advance of deciding whether to apply for the full 13-month retreat series program.

The next two introductory retreat opportunities will be in the winter of 2019, prior to the beginning of our next Courage to Lead retreat series for nonprofit leaders. Both introductory retreats will be held at La Casa de Maria retreat center in the foothills of Montecito (near Santa Barbara), starting at 4PM Wednesday and ending at noon on Friday.

f you want to receive notification of when registration opens or about the process, please email our Operations Manager Sarah Harris at

We are here to help.  If you have any questions or need assistance, please feel free to contact us at 805-770-3232.

If there are no longer spaces for you in an introductory retreat and you want to consider participating in our next retreat series beginning in November 2017, contact Ken Saxon at Ken can help answer your questions and get you up to speed in your discernment of deciding if this program is right for you. Many people participate in our Courage to Lead retreat series without having attended an introductory retreat.

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